Posted by: Dr P | November 11, 2008


To quote the great Edwin Starr: “War, what is it good for? Absolutely nothing”

Well, I’d like to take issue with that. My Friday night entertainment consisted of the most wondrous DVD release possibly in the entire history of film. “War” is a martial arts/cop movie starring one of the legends of martial arts movies, the one and only Jet Li, and Jason Statham. That’s right. A legend and a leg-end. The blurb for this film promised corrupt cops, endless martial arts action, triads, Yakuza, normal cops, intrigue, mystery and suspense. As if that wasn’t hysterically appealing enough … there are ninjas!

I won’t bother to try and explain the plot for three reasons:

a) I had half an ear out for the kids and wasn’t really paying full attention
b) I was on the phone half the time
c) there wasn’t one, or rather there was but it was so convoluted I gave up and just enjoyed the dreadful acting

Any film that contains such classic exchanges as:

Cop 1 – “I like to get close and personal”
Cop 2 – “My weapon’s bigger than yours”


(Two men looking in slo-mo close-up of foxy girl riding a white horse)

Man 1 – “That’s one hell of a beast”
Man 2 – “That’s my wife”

deserves everything it gets. Basically – and this is really simplified – the cops are trying to break the Yakuza, the Yakuza are trying to break the triads, the triads are trying to hurt the cops, Japanese business men are trying to screw each other over, Jason Statham is trying to break his own record for the worst acting ever seen, and everyone massacres everyone. And then the ninjas arrive! It’s absolutely mega, and if you miss this movie, you’ve missed a landmark in cinematic history in my view.

My favourite scene is one in which Mr Statham is trying to torture information out of a wounded Yakuza man by sticking his hand into a bullet wound and wiggling it a bit. “This’ll get infected if I don’t remove the shrapnel … oh no, hang on … that’s your bone”. Stupendous! And then – get this – there’s a scene where some tough-ass Triad girl sends a lackey out to get some lunch for her. She puts a gun in his face and says “No blue cheese!” and then as he’s leaving she whizzes a knife which thuds into the wall right by his head: “With dressing on the side, please”. I nearly fell off the sofa at that point, I think it was the use of the word “please” which did it!

If you’re not yet salivating, then this clearly isn’t the movie for you, and if you are, you’re probably related to Mr Statham, who salivates in pretty much every scene. 5 stars in anyone’s book!


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